Despite the suspension of games in Major League Baseball, the Blue Jays made a roster transaction on Sunday, selecting the contract of infielder Joe Panik, who signed a minor league contract prior to spring training. Adding Panik to the 40-man roster ensures that he stays with Toronto, as it has been reported by Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith that he had a March opt-out. The transaction also allows Panik to remain in spring training with the club, as all players who are not on the 40-man roster were to be sent home.
To make room for Panik, pitcher Yennsy Diaz was placed on the 60-day injured list with a lat strain, as reported by TSN’s Scott Mitchell. Of course, due to the suspension of the season, Diaz may not end up missing any games. The United States’s Center for Disease Control recommended on Sunday that organizers should not hold in-person events with more than 50 people for the next eight weeks. That should mean that the earliest we can expect the season to resume would be May 10.
The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal has reported that MLB will be freezing rosters soon and that the league is in talks with the players’ association to discuss the season suspension’s effects on scheduling, service time, and other business matters.
Key points from memo sent by Players Association to agents this morning:— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) March 16, 2020
1. Transaction/signing freeze under discussion, expected in “very near future.” To be lifted when camps reopen. PA wants to protect players with March opt-out clauses that have been effectively nullified.
2. To cover spring-training living allowances, players who return home or to club’s home city can get up to $1,100 per week through PA until 4/9 or until such a time clubs provide similar. Applies to players on 40-man roster players as of 3/13/20 and certain non-roster invitees.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) March 16, 2020
3. Talks with MLB continue on host of issues, including: Conditions for resumption of play; amended scheduling; player salaries; service time; contracts and transactions; core economics; amateur signings and potential adjustments for collectively bargained dates and deadlines.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) March 16, 2020
I hope you are all doing the necessary precautions to keep yourselves and the people around you safe and healthy.